I have to give a massive congrats to John Kershaw from M14 industries, who took the previoulsy mentioned Bristlr app from niche dating to hosted matching platform (very much selling shovles during a goldrush). Yesterday he appeared on the BBC’s Dragons Den and struck a great deal with Peter and Nick for a reasonable percentage of the business.
Of course John had a viewing party with friends, investers and family. Its season 14 episode 15 if you are looking for it.
John’s written his thoughts up here.
Before Nick showed his hand, and it was looking like I might get investment from all five dragons simultaneously, I started to internally panic. This isn’t how this happens.
After all the Dragons had given their offers, I knew I’d have to go with Nick and Peter; they have the experience and if they’re not willing to share, I don’t have much choice.
And it’s at this point where an interesting thing happens: I forgot everyone’s names.
Certainly another great story for Manchester’s Startup community and the early investors who saw the potential of M14 industries early on. I personally was always impressed with John and although we sometimes disagreed about what should be next on the task list, its great to get the validation that it wasn’t just a silly app!
At Silicon Drinkabout last night, I was introduced to John Kershaw who created a social network/dating site for people with and like beards – Bristlr. (yes this is the uniform dating style thing, basically for anybody)
- Tell us where you are, and if you have a bear
- Got a beard? We find people looking for beards
- Want a beard? We find people with beards worth looking for
- Send messages to people you match with
- Your life now contains more beard love, you’re welcome
John seems to have got quite a few people on-board with no advertising or promotion. Its a interesting site and hits a niche really well.
We take your privacy seriously. We won’t sell your data. That’s a dick thing to do.
When you use Bristlr, we collect a fair chunk of data about you, but it’s the bare minimum required for the website to function. All of the information is collected explicitly from you.
As this is the internet, our servers collect loads of info like your IP address and some browser details. We do use standard internet tracking and monitoring software, namely Google Analytics, to tell us about who is using the website.
If ever we need to use your personal information for any reason which isn’t essential to the running of Bristlr, we will ask for your consent.
We may disclose your personal information if we are required by law. But we would be super fucking unhappy if this happened.
There is a premium option (there always is!) which shows you the people you’ve yet to match with who have “liked” you. But realistically, its the price of a coffee or theres the pyramid approach with a referrals..
I’m signed up, giving it a try and of course you can give it a try too for free. Theres a referral if you like to enable me premium for a bit http://www.bristlr.com/?referral=cubicgarden